Hitting the road in 2019 and hoping to get or stay fit? No matter the destination or scenario, staying active is in reach – as close as five feet from your bed, in some cases, or just steps beyond your hotel room.
Sticking to your fitness goals when traveling starts with accessibility, so Hilton launched its Five Feet to Fitness guest room concept with that in mind and is gradually rolling it out at select hotels. Part traditional hotel room, part “miniature gym,” the in-room concept makes sweat sessions more convenient and private. It also provides a wellness portal with an interactive kiosk that guides guests through fitness yoga sessions, body weight routines, high-intensity training intervals (HIIT), and more.
But travelers not staying in a Five Feet to Fitness room can use the concept for inspiration to turn any hotel stay into a healthier getaway, says Melissa Walker, Hilton’s fitness guru and wellness trend spotter. Here are five of Melissa’s top tips for staying fit and well this year even while living out of a suitcase.
Recognize your roadblocks and create a game plan
Before a business trip, you probably think about how to maximize your meetings and achieve your goals. Planning to ensure you maintain your healthy routine is no different. Will your meetings run long and make you too tired for a major gym workout? Pack a bathing suit and go for a short, refreshing splash in the hotel pool instead. Will you have a long layover? Search for options like the free yoga studio at San Francisco International Airport, or wear sneakers to squeeze in steps between check-in and boarding time.
Steer clear of roadblocks to your workout by anticipating them and creating a backup plan. Photo: Hilton Americas-Houston
Find your own Five Feet to Fitness
Adopt the mentality that workouts can happen anytime, anywhere. What’s important is that you’re moving, so find a small area to do some simple stretches or yoga moves in your room. You could also try a high-intensity interval training workout (some suggested moves here), which according to Worldwide Survey of Fitness Trends for 2019 is a leading macro trend on the rise this year.
If you’re willing to move more than five feet, use the hotel stairs as a fitness challenge (but check with the front desk to be sure it’s safe to do). Many hotels are adding lighting and other updates to stairwells to make them more guest-friendly. Or if you prefer fresh air, ask the hotel for a neighborhood map and take a brisk walk. If you’re staying at a Hilton All Suites property, ask about the designated Walk/Run Routes called Hydrate Your Run, with well-lit, safe sidewalks that help avoid road traffic.
Keep in mind that your workouts can happen anytime, anywhere, including just outside your hotel. Photo: Hampton Inn Jasper
Try something new on the wellness scene
There are an abundance of new fitness classes and spa treatments available these days, from goat yoga and trampoline classes to sound baths. Why not use the new year as a reason to explore something different? This might include your hotel; some Hiltons, for example, offer group wellness classes for guests, so be sure to inquire.
Try an outdoor activity, such as a scenic biking adventure in Los Cabos, Mexico. Photo: Hilton Los Cabos.
Find a quiet space to meditate
According to a national U.S. survey on the prevalence of meditation, the practice has been on the rise, more than tripling from 2012 to 2017. Five Feet to Fitness rooms include a meditation chair, and several meditation videos are being released this month on the fitness kiosk. Or, you can create your own meditation space in your room or try to find a quiet space in or around the hotel. Ask the staff if there is a space on the hotel grounds with a garden, or an empty conference room with a view.
DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel Los Angeles Downtown’s Japanese rooftop garden is a Zen-like oasis in the middle of the city.
Plan ahead to recover right
Getting a good night’s rest is just as important as vowing to exercise and eat right. If you’re staying at a Hilton, before you arrive you can use the Hilton Honors app to select a quiet room on a high floor away from the elevators, or pre-order more pillows from housekeeping. Hilton is currently testing innovative sleep-enhancing and noise-cancelling solutions that will eventually roll out to our hotels, but in the meantime these tricks should help keep wellness pledges on track for the year.
The award-winning Hilton Honors app allows travelers to select the room they want based on the hotel's layout and outside surroundings.
Melissa Walker has spent over 20 years in the health, fitness and nutrition space as a Registered Dietitian and Cooper Institute Certified Personal Trainer, with undergraduate degrees in Exercise and Health Science and Human Nutrition and Dietetics and a master’s degree in Business Administration. She is currently the Senior Director of Global Wellness at Hilton.